‘Barriers To Entry Are Disappearing, Disruptors Are Being Disrupted’- Emmanuel Agu

Emmanuel Agu, Group Marketing Director, Jotna Nigeria Limited.

The Group Marketing Director, Jotna Nigeria Limited (The LaCasera Drinks Company),  Emmanuel Agu has disclosed that barrier to entry into the marketing space is fast disappearing compared to the past years, as the disruptors are now being disrupted in a world that is becoming borderless and porous through the internet.

“Barrier to entry are disappearing, disruptors are being disrupted,” he said.  According to him, ‘slowbalization’ is the new globalization and consumer knowledge is increasing day by day. He therefore urged brands to be innovative and strategic in order to make their business future fit.

Agu made this known as a panelists on the theme, “Making your business future fit: The Post Digital Age Challenge,” at the Marketing Edge Summit held virtually recently in Lagos.

He explained that to make business future fit, nine pillars are essential and they include: Technology, innovation, big data analytics, digitalization, multiple business models, consumer experience, anticipative organization, evolving culture as well as learning and development.

He said            that technology enhances capabilities and also help maximizes efficiencies which allow for greater agility across operations, hence, it is imperative for brands to deploy technology in order to make their operation seamless, and to help them react fast in the face of changing consumer demand.

In another vein, he urged brands to adopt solution-based innovation philosophy, maximize blue ocean opportunities and red ocean gaps through renovation as he called for speedy execution. Agu explained that the brand, Smoov for example disrupted the market when it launched Chapman in PET bottle.

On a different note, he said data and analytics must be at the core of strategic decision making, pointing that consumer data and creativity must fuse together to drive future business. “Creative solutions must be inspired by human truth that comes from data. Businesses with empowered market intelligence team will get ahead in the future,” he disclosed.

To achieve digitalization, he urged brands to embrace digital platforms and innovator, invest and experiment with AI, phygitalization and other emerging technologies by building the right digital infrastructure.

Also, he urged brands to delight their customers by creating memorable experience and by creating salience with meaning through activation.

For businesses to be future-fit, he also called for diversification of operations, “Growth in future business requires the pursuit of multiple business models. Be bold with new innovation approaches,” he pointed.

Similarly, he stated that a brand like Seven-Up Bottling Company Ltd, producers of cola brand, Pepsi diversified into sanitizers with the brand ‘2sure’ and construction company, Julius Berger diversified into Agro-processing industry.”Create intentional flexibility for new business models to thrive,” he said.

Similarly, he tasked brands to build fluid and collaborative structures in order to respond to the forces of the future. “Search and spin global best practices and adapt where applicable. Encourage diversity in strategic decision making,” he explained.

He also called for the training and retraining of staff to achieve efficiency. “Encourage exchange programmes for cross-fertilization of ideas and improve human capital development in STEM skills.”

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